I posted last year that I was trying to struggle through Pride and Prejudice along with a bunch of other books to up my reading quota. Well, it turns out I never finished P&P (I’ll try again some day) but I did read a bunch of other stuff, making it up to thirteen books by the end of the summer (Martha’s Vineyard, for the record, is the perfect place to take a little séjour if you’re in the mood for one of those holidays where you just read and read and read). Some of the ones that *blew my mind* (just off the top of my head) are No-one Belongs Here More Than You by Miranda July and particularly Autobiography of a Blue-Eyed Devil by Inga Muscio (the genius responsible for Cunt: A Declaration of Independence). July’s short stories are so insanely good that they almost compell you to make something in response, and there’s the odd moment-of-recognition that makes you think it was written especially for you; you should also be warned that they’re pretty creepy at times. As for Muscio, this woman writes the most incisive commentaries on our contemporary culture and always inspires me to look at things in a whole new light. Autobiography is about racism and imperialism and, although this is an issue I was aware of, I gained a whole new understanding and learnt things beyond my wildest knowledge-related dreams. And her writing style is very enjoyable to read – she’s hella entertaining and accessible.
More recently, I’ve been enjoying Russell Brand’s My Booky Wook, which is preposterously well-written. While in the past my opinion of him has wavered between “arrogant twat…hottie…womaniser…very funny guy…how exciting that we have someone on mainstream tv who challenges the dominant paradigm on masculinity…oh he’s slept with Kate Moss, how cliché”, I am currently firmly on the “he’s incredibly likeable and I rather fancy him” side of the fence. He’s clearly insanely intelligent and I love him.
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